Timetable information in the Course Catalogue may be subject to change.

University Homepage
DRPS Homepage
DRPS Search
DRPS Contact
DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : Economic and Social History

Undergraduate Course: The Demon Drink: producing, consuming and opposing alcohol in Britain and Ireland, c. 1760 to 1921 (ECSH10107)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of History, Classics and Archaeology CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryAn examination of the transformation of the production and consumption of, and opposition to, alcoholic beverages in Britain and Ireland over the course of the long 19th Century.
Course description Over the course of the 19th Century, the production and consumption of alcohol in Britain and Ireland were transformed from a rural activity connected to local agriculture to a more recognisably modern industry increasingly serving the domestic urban and export markets. By the turn of the 20th Century, the liquor market featured strong brands for which the image of cultural exotica (especially an idealised image of Scotland and Ireland) had become as important as the consistent flavour of the product itself; while producers and regulators strove to legally define the characteristics of consumer products whose household names were now valuable commercial property. Throughout the same period the opposition to the social and health impact of alcohol use also crystallised into a strong temperance movement that became increasingly conflated with aspects of the broader women┬┐s movement.

This Honours level option course examines the formative period of this important and controversial industry through a close engagement with a wide range of primary sources. The approach is interdisciplinary, bringing in knowledge and methodologies from across History and the other Social Sciences. No prior Economic History knowledge is necessary.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements A pass or passes in 40 credits of first level historical courses or equivalent and a pass or passes in 40 credits of second level historical courses or equivalent.

Students should only be enrolled on this course with approval from the History Honours Programme Administrator.
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students should have at least 3 History courses at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this). We will only consider University/College level courses. Applicants should note that, as with other popular courses, meeting the minimum does NOT guarantee admission.

** as numbers are limited, visiting students should contact the Visiting Student Office directly for admission to this course **
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  25
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 22, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 174 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 80 %, Practical Exam 20 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Coursework:
3000 word essay (50%)
1000 word primary source analysis (30%)

Non-Written Skills:
Oral presentation of a primary source connected with essay (10%)
Class and/or forum participation (10%)
Feedback Students will receive feedback on their coursework, and will have the opportunity to discuss that feedback further with the Course Organiser during their published office hours for this course or by appointment.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Think and work in an interdisciplinary manner, where necessary bringing in concepts and methodologies from outside Economic History and even from disciplines other than History.
  2. Independently locate, evaluate and employ useful primary sources.
  3. Independently identify historical questions that are not adequately answered in the historiography; or that are still part of unresolved historiographical controversy; or have been left unanswered altogether up to this point.
  4. Demonstrate, by way of coursework, an ability to develop and sustain scholarly arguments in oral and written form, by formulating appropriate questions and utilising relevant evidence;
  5. Demonstrate independence of mind and initiative, intellectual integrity and maturity, and an ability to evaluate the work of others, including peers.
Reading List
1. Thora Hands (2018), Drinking in Victorian and Edwardian Britain: Beyond the Spectre of the Drunkard
2. Brian Howard Harrison (1994) Drink and the Victorians: the temperance question in England, 1815-1872
3. Megan Smitley, Pamela Sharpe, Penny Summerfield, Lynn Abrams, and Cordelia Beattie (2009), The Feminine Public Sphere : Middle-Class Women and Civic Life in Scotland, C. 1870-1914
4. James Simpson (2011), Creating Wine : The Emergence of a World Industry, 1840-1914
5. George D., Jr. Gale and George D. Gale (2011), Dying on the Vine : How Phylloxera Transformed Wine
6. Wilson R.G. and Gourvish T.R. (eds.) (1998), The Dynamics of the International Brewing Industry Since 1800
7. Yeomans, H. (2014), Alcohol and moral regulation: Public attitudes, spirited measures and Victorian hangovers
8. Greenaway J. (2003), Drink and British Politics Since 1830: A Study in Policy Making
9. *R. B. Weir (1995), The History of the Distillers Company, 1877-1939
10. James Nicholls (2009), The Politics of Alcohol: A History of the Drink Question in England
11. Schrad, M. L. (2010), The Political Power of Bad Ideas: Networks, Institutions, and the Global Prohibition Wave
12. Cooke, A. (2015), A History of Drinking: The Scottish Pub since 1700

* Indicates hardcopy-only title
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills The course will help students to develop the following core graduate attributes:
- Skills and abilities in research and enquiry;
- Skills and abilities in personal and intellectual autonomy;
- Skills and abilities in communication;
- Skills and abilities in personal effectiveness
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Paul Kosmetatos
Tel: (0131 6)50 3838
Course secretaryMiss Katherine Perry
Help & Information
Search DPTs and Courses
Degree Programmes
Browse DPTs
Humanities and Social Science
Science and Engineering
Medicine and Veterinary Medicine
Other Information
Combined Course Timetable
Important Information